The Penguin Handbook of the World’s Living Religions (Penguin Reference Library) From Hinnells, John R. (EDT)


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The Penguin Handbook of the World's Living Religions (Penguin Reference Library) From Hinnells, John R. (EDT)

The Penguin Handbook of the World’s Living Religions (Penguin Reference Library) From Hinnells, John R. (EDT)

The Penguin Handbook of the World's Living Religions (Penguin Reference Library) From Hinnells, John R. (EDT)

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The Penguin Handbook of the World's Living Religions (Penguin Reference Library) From Hinnells, John R. (EDT)

Comprehensive, informative and authoritative, The Penguin Handbook of the World’s Living Religions is compiled by a team of leading international scholars, and is the definitive guide to the religious belief systems and practices of the world today. This in-depth survey of active religions has now been fully updated to include modern developments and the most recent scholarship. It explains the sources and history of the world’s religions, includes material on the phenomenon of Black African and Asian diaspora religions around the world and explores the role of gender in modern religion.

  • Sales Rank: #407738 in Books
  • Brand: Hinnells, John R. (EDT)
  • Published on: 2010-12-28
  • Released on: 2010-12-28
  • Original language: English
  • Number of items: 1
  • Dimensions: 7.75″ h x 1.65″ w x 5.10″ l, 1.52 pounds
  • Binding: Paperback
  • 1008 pages

About the Author
John R. Hinnells is professor of religious studies at the University of Derby. He has written or edited many books for Penguin.

Most helpful customer reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
Great textbook. Not that good for personal information.
By B. Marold
Like the earlier reviewer, I got this for a primary textbook for an Introduction to World Religions, where we covered Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Jainism, and Buddhism. There was an additional text for the first three religions, but I would have preferred a supplementary text for the last four, since almost all the class was already well versed on the Abrahamic religions.

I would give this 4 1/2 stars, if that were possible. It served its purpose well, but it is really limited to that purpose. If you wish to learn about the theology of an unfamiliar religion, look for a good introductory book from series by Cambridge University Press, for example.

The book has a primarily sociological, demographic and historical point of view. There is much on the various branches of each religion and their history, but very little on theology. You also want to take the title seriously. There is nothing here about religions which have lost their adherents, such as Zoroastrianism and the great polytheistic pantheons. For those, Hinnells has another big collection.

The print in this volume is borderline small. I have old eyes, but I did not have any trouble reading it in good light. One may be tempted to get a Kindle version, but like many other titles, Kindle has problems with tables. They are very, very small, and cannot be expanded like standard text. And there are lots of tables in this book. I disagree with the other reviewer on the writing itself. With most authors (each religion done by a different author) the writing is quite brisk, with very few places where you have to catch yourself and say “…what did I just read…”

The very best aspect of the book, as it should be, is its bibliographies. But like the text, the bibliographies focus on history and not theology. In the cross-religious topics, the bibliographies seem quite good. I checked the bibliography on Gender Issues, and it seemed to have all the right people, except for Judith Butler (but she is not a theological writer per se.)

If you do not need this book for a course, the best use is if you have some need for cross-religious perspectives, especially since this edition is from 2010, so it is still fairly current. I would place the chapters in this book to be superior to articles in encyclopedias, even encyclopedias of religions, except for theological topics.

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful.
World Religions
By carol hitchie
Thorough, but not the easiest read. Bought it for a class and we’re working with it as a reference.
It’s excellent for a source, not late night reading for entertainment.

0 of 0 people found the following review helpful.
… the book as yet—however–what I have read is the best I have ever run across–superb I await with great …
By william De savino
I have not finished reading the book as yet—however–what I have read is the best I have ever run across–superb I await with great
expectation for the religions to come .

See all 4 customer reviews…

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The Penguin Handbook of the World’s Living Religions (Penguin Reference Library) From Hinnells, John R. (EDT) PDF
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